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News Details

Date: 8/19/2018

Russia won their third IHF Women’s Youth (U18) World Championship trophy and defended the title won two years ago when they defeated Hungary by two goals in the Poland 2018 final on Sunday evening. Russia are the first nation to take the Women’s Youth World Championship title twice in a row, after winning at Slovakia 2016 and celebrating their first gold medal at home in 2008.

“I’m speechless. We prepared all summer for this World Championship. We are very, very happy. This is unbelievable,” said Russia’s player of the match Elena Mikhaylichenko. “We have very strong defence. Our system is really good, and that’s because the coach is really strict with us and insists on our discipline.


“I prepared every day and every night to get to this moment. This is the most important moment in my career. I’m extremely happy. I have no words to describe what I’m feeling.”


Though Hungary are disappointed to leave without the trophy, it is an historic result nevertheless, as their previous best ranking was fifth.


Final: Hungary vs Russia 27:29 (12:15)


Russia and Hungary delivered just the quality contest expected in the Poland 2018 final, as both sides proved they belonged in the trophy match with efficient, powerful attack; strong defence supported by solid goalkeepers; and a fast pace throughout the 60 minutes. Both coaches – Beata Bohus for Hungary and Liubov Sidoricheva – could afford to rotate through their deep squads without compromising quality.


Both coaches also played a similar tactical game, starting with 6-0 defence and changing their goalkeepers several times. Russia shifted temporarily to 5-1 defence early in the second half, while Bohus played 5-1 through the entire second 30 minutes. While Bohus started with Dora Szabo in goal and changed to Lili Herczeg late in the first period, Sidoricheva replaced Poland 2018 All-star Team keeper Anna Vereschek after just 10 minutes of play. Nadezda Kolesnikova was a worthy replacement, recording a 42% save rate when she left the court early in the second 30 minutes for Vereschek to return in stronger form.


In attack, Hungary left back Tamara Pal led the opening 10 minutes of the match with four goals from four attempts, standing out among a field full of strong back-court players. Following a level start, Russia recorded a 3:0 partial through the final three minutes before half-time to create a critical lead before the break. Hungary were left fighting to reduce the deficit, coming within two at 19:21 in the 46th minute and prompting Sidoricheva to call a time-out.


Both coaches changed their keepers as the final buzzer neared, with Bohus bringing in Noemi Magera and Russia switching back to Kolesnikova. Magera made several saves against wide-open shooting chances, but it was too late. Russia decided the game with a goal from right wing Anna Sheina that pulled Russia in front by three inside the last 60 seconds.


Players of the match:
Hungary: Greta Kacsor
Russia: Elena Mikhaylichenko